Old Growth

by Ruth Holzer Issue: Fall 2016 Special Issue on Forests
He enters a remnant of the great Carolinian forest,
the broad-leafed hardwood that has held
green and golden light for centuries,
and laments the loss of the territory.
He longs to know it as it was before the clearances
and the grid of farmlands, before the dull onion fields
and the ceaseless hum of the turbines,
when the Chippewa called it home
and passenger pigeons darkened the sky.
He kneels beneath the soaring canopy,
scoops up smooth acorns from a bed of fern.

Ruth Holzer

Ruth Holzer’s poems have appeared in a variety of journals, including Southern Poetry Review, Connecticut River Review, Journal of New Jersey Poets, The South Carolina Review, Slant, Unicorn Blue and THEMA. Her work has also been published in many anthologies. A six-time Pushcart nominee, she is the author of the chapbooks The First Hundred Years, The Solitude of Cities and A Woman Passing.